Posted 21 October 2013 - 12:25 PM
There are several lineup changes and a lot of line juggling for tonight's game against the NHL-leading San Jose Sharks at Joe Louis Arena (7:30 p.m., Fox Sports Detroit).
Defenseman Xavier Ouellet will make his NHL debut after being recalled from the Grand Rapids Griffins. He replaces Jonathan Ericsson, who won't play because his wife went into labor last night, coach Mike Babcock said.
Niklas Kronwall skated today for the first time since sustaining a mild concussion on Thursday but, as expected, won't play tonight. He hopes to return for Wednesday's game against Ottawa at JLA.
No go tonight,'' Kronwall said. "I feel good. It felt good to be back out there on the ice with the guys. Im looking forward to hopefully playing on Wednesday.
Kronwall hopes to be cleared by the team doctor tonight.
"So far Ive felt really good ever since Day 1, so hopefully Ill be given the go-ahead on Wednesday,'' Kronwall said.
You talk to several people who have said it could take several days before (symptoms) kick in, so far its been good, so knock on wood.''
Changes to the forward pairs include Justin Abdelkader moving back to the top line, Johan Franzen centering the second line, Stephen Weiss bumped to the third line and Tomas Tatar and Jordin Tootoo inserted into the lineup.
This will be only the second game of the season for Tatar.
Obviously, its a nice reward for the waiting, and we are playing against tough team tonight,'' Tatar said.
"Its going to be a little hard since I didnt play for a little while (since Oct. 5), but just try to make a play, play simple in the hard areas, try to manage the puck, dont do turnovers. I think the system should work for me as well. Its going to take care of me and hopefully I will play good and try my best.
The Sharks (7-0-1) lead the league with 15 points. The Red Wings (6-3-0, 12 points) had their four-game winning streak snapped in a 5-2 loss at Phoenix on Saturday.
Here are the lines and defense pairings they'll start with:
Henrik Zetterberg-Pavel Datsyuk-Justin Abdelkader
Todd Bertuzzi-Johan Franzen-Daniel Alfredsson
Tomas Tatar-Stephen Weiss-Daniel Cleary
Drew Miller-Joakim Andersson-Jordin Tootoo
Kyle Quincey-Danny DeKeyser
Brian Lashoff-Jakub Kindl
Brendan Smith-Xavier Ouellet
Jimmy Howard (starting)
Center Luke Glendening was reassigned to Grand Rapids to make room for Ouellet on the roster.
Right wing Mikael Samuelsson is a healthy scratch. Darren Helm and Patrick Eaves also skated but remain on long-term injured reserve until Saturday's game.
KOHARSKI, HAVE ANOTHER DONUT, YOU FAT PIG
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